PSI is taking an active part in the Post-2015 Development agenda and, together with other trade unions and civil society partners, is calling for an intergovernmental tax body to stop the billions lost in tax income for all nations as well as for real safeguards for public-private partnerships (PPPs) and the exclusion of health, education and water from the promotion of PPPs in this agenda.
PSI representatives participated in numerous side-events and roundtables at the Third International Conference on Financing for Development (FFD3).
This statement was delivered by PSI General Secretary, Rosa Pavanelli, during the first roundtable of the FFD3 Round table 1: Global partnership and the three dimensions of sustainable development:
“The FfD3 aims to reduce inequality and poverty that have grown in recent years. Decent jobs with decent wages, social protection, access to public services and progressive fair taxation systems are key to sustainable development. The Common but Differentiated principle must be taken into account in order to support the political legitimacy and the effective impact of the FfD agenda.
Governments are mandated to fulfil the human rights obligation towards their citizens and public services are the tool that can ensure universal access. It is not by calling on private investment that such an obligation can be fulfilled nor the enjoyment of human rights ensured for all.
We witnessed the deaths of thousands of men and women, including more than 500 health workers, because of the lack of a public health system during the recent Ebola outbreak.
After every natural disaster, we mourn the victims and celebrate the braveness of first responders, but we hardly see investment in preparedness and protection of people and communities.
Health, education, safe water and sanitation are essential to address the causes of poverty and cannot be dealt with as commodities. FdD3 has to exclude them from private financing and PPPs.
This is why domestic revenue mobilization is a critical foundation to political legitimacy and financing of states.
The long list of MNCs that evade and avoid tax is finally an evidence recognised as a global scandal that contributes to growing inequality. This praxis is affecting both developed and developing countries, but the impact on the latter is far more disastrous. The BEPS programme is a first step, but it is too a little a commitment that continues to exclude developing countries.
We welcome the report of ICRICT and support the claim that Corporates must pay tax as all workers do. They must pay as a single firm, apportioning their taxation in the countries where they do business.
The commitment to broadening tax base should start from corporates, rather than focusing on the inclusion of formal sector that means putting further burden on the poorest of the poor. The adoption of a road map to enforce fair and progressive taxation worldwide can change the profile of FFD3 and enhance the credibility of the international community.
Tax is too important to be decided in small clubs. We need an intergovernmental tax body, within the UN, to ensure solutions and assist development in a democratic and transparent environment where all interests are represented and all voices heard
For more information on PSI's activities at the FFD3 see: